"Scientists are close to cracking the code of life with an advance that has far-reaching implications for the understanding, diagnosis and treatment of disease. They have known for more than 40 years how the genetic code held in DNA describes the sequence of molecular building blocks - amino acids - that make up proteins, the complex molecules used to build and run our bodies.
But it has not been possible to predict the shape of proteins, which is crucial for understanding how these biological machines work. Solving this three-dimensional puzzle has been one of the grand challenges of biology, one that could speed the development of new drugs to treat cancer, heart disease and all other ailments.
Now Prof David Baker, Dr Philip Bradley and Dr Kira Misura of the University of Washington, Seattle, report in the latest issue of the journal Science that they have managed the feat to high accuracy for a handful of small proteins, providing the first hope that it is possible."
Rosetta@home What is Rosetta@home?
"Rosetta@home is a scientific research project that uses internet-connected computers to predict and design protein structures, and protein-protein and protein-ligand interactions. Our goal is to develop methods that accurately predict and design protein structures and complexes, an endeavor that may ultimately help researchers develop cures for human diseases (See the Human Proteome Folding Project, a collaborative effort to apply our software on the human genome). Our project relies on individuals, like you, who donate time on their computers to collectively provide the computing power necessary to further develop, test, and improve our methods."
“Bioinformatics will be at the core of biology in the 21st century. In fields ranging from structural biology to genomics to biomedical imaging, ready access to data and analytical tools are fundamentally changing the way investigators in the life sciences conduct research and approach problems. Complex, computationally intensive biological problems are now being addressed and promise to significantly advance our understanding of biology and medicine. No biological discipline will be unaffected by these technological breakthroughs.”BIOINFORMATICS IN THE 21st CENTURY
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